Thursday, December 31, 2015

New Year same as the old? - 2016 Hobby Resolutions.

Hi. Randroid here.

Not going to go line by line on all the resolutions I made last year and failed. Let's just say I could have done better.

2015 was quite an odd one for me. I did a lot of stuff and also did not do a lot of stuff. Big things of note:

- Started a new job at the end of 2014 and opened a new business early in 2015.
- Almost exactly one year after starting the new job I quit and began a different job at another employer.
- Started working on my own pizza business in between all that and sold quite a few at various places around my town and the response was good.
- Did not update this blog. Did not attend any gaming events (only 2 Bloodbowl tournaments and one of them was an event I co-run with Furry). Did not paint many models (haven't really painted any since August). Did not play any games (with the exception of a stalled out group for Mordheim and AoS Warhammer).
- Started a band with my better half.
- Broke my computer and have been without one for 6 months or so.
- Failed to continue my weekly metal radio show the Grind in the process. Stopped broadcasting online as well as at the local community station.

All of that could signal a bad time, and there were bad times involved, but overall it was a year of building and getting things in order. Gaming is a huge priority for me still and one I want to have in my life but my previous job schedule kept me from having much of a social life (getting up at 4am daily tends to do that).

So on to 2016!

I still don't have a computer but I hope to remedy that in the next month or so. Most of my "extra" funds were going to musical equipment but we have what we need for our band now so that should slow down.

I have tons of models and games to play! Working on getting a bi-weekly RPG game rolling with some old gaming co-horts and I am really excited to pick that back up. Also have several new games I want to find time to learn and play.

So how does this blog fit into all of that? Not sure quite yet but I will keep posting here as much as I am able and desire to do so. Hopefully you'll stick around and if not... best of luck to you all in 2016 and beyond!!!

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Progress Report 9/30/15 - Septembarrrr.

September is here! No wait... September is gone!! 

Another month lacking in gaming and updates. Spent most of it working for the man or working for myself. Did manage to play one game though... Rum & Bones by CMON came in the mail early on in the month. What can I say? It's a very slick looking game. The miniatures are far superior to any other board game I have seen. So much detail and fantastic poses.

But how does it play? Fast and furious once you know the rules.In my one and only game I managed to quickly take the lead by being very aggressive and storming my opponent's ship. 

Things were looking good for the undead pirates until they accidentally summoned the KRAKEN (with a roll of 2 on 2d6 at the end of the turn above).

Yeah. The KRAKEN ate most of my pirates before vanishing back into the depths the next turn. Oh well... someone has to get eaten right!? In the end I managed to sneak out a victory but it was a close fought thing with that damned KRAKEN coming back another round before being beaten to death by angry crewmen.

Short review - easy to learn, quick to play, plenty of strategy and variety, nice risk vs reward mechanics. A great 2 player game with plenty to offer. Check it out! 

Monday, August 31, 2015

Progress Report 8/31/15 - August come and gone.

I greatly underestimated the amount of my free time I would have left for painting and gaming when starting a new business. Pizzas are selling, plans are moving forward, and life goes on. 

In the wastes though... there are no pizzas. Or are there? 

Got into playing This Is Not A Test by Worlds End Publishing late last month. Only managed to play two games but so far I am really loving it. Imagine if Mordheim/Necromunda had a baby with the Fallout series and add a splash of your favorite post-apoc scenes and you'd be right in that sweet spot that is TNT. Even got the missus to create her own warband and delve into the wastes so you know that has me excited!

Since I haven't managed to play any games of Deadzone since last year I put the terrain to good use as well as some bits I have crafted on my own. Still needs paint and rust but they get the job done. 

Here are a few random shots from the two games I have played with the Skullkrushas (formerly of the Goliath Necromunda gang now representing a Raider warband in TNT). First game was against the Caravaneers of the missus and the second game had me facing a rather scary flamethrower and suicide bombing mess led by a Hangin' Judge. 

First table set up gave the Caravaneers plenty of high ground to shoot from.
Still managed to sneak around and throw a few of them into the rubble.
Second game was a bunch of fanatical Redeemers leading a monster down the road.
They had a ways to go before they could escape safely.
Too bad the Skullkrushas were waiting in ambush to claim the monster for themselves!

Lots of fantastic "cinematic" moments came up in these two games including Krusha my Raider Warlord throwing several opponents into one another and also diving into a broken window to avoid being roasted with a flamethrower. And plenty of mutants. Gotta have mutants. And bombs.

Speaking of things you gotta have... more terrain! This time I raided the pet store (okay I was there to get dog food too but you always gotta be on the lookout for new toys). 
Scully poses next to the spoils of war aka stuff from the Aquarium aisle.
Need to build these up a bit and paint some more but the overall look is pretty solid and they were quite cheap! Pet stores... not just for fake plastic plants anymore. 

On the AoS front I have played nothing. But I did manage to assemble and prime all of my Khorne forces! Hope to get some paint on them soon and maybe even drag them down to the FLGS to get a game or two in. Could give me a good reason to build these two pewter Hellcannons I have.

In the world of Bloodbowl... what is Bloodbowl?? Haven't played a game since Headbangers Ball and missed Zlurpee Bowl due to work. Next up... going to miss Chaos Cup as well!! Truly a shitty year for tournament play. I suppose my opponents will just have to beat someone else this time around. 

Upwards and onwards to September and Fall! My favorite time of year.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Age of Sigmar starter kit has arrived!

Just went on down to my new FLGS ChronoCade and picked up the new Age of Sigmar box set. Sadly I am about to head away for the next couple days but before I go to the wilderness I wanted to take a quick peek at the contents and share them with you.

First thing I see walking into the new space of the store is a table full of minis! Always gets me excited! Sadly I wasn't able to hang around and play the game but I am already planning to get back for some tabletop action. 

There it is. The box. The much lauded and hated and everything else box of minis. What can I say? The art looks awesome. If I didn't know anything about it I would be interested. Opening it up you find a nice stack of high quality and very detailed minis. And some blue sticks. 

Book that comes included has detailed instructions for mini assembly (very nice)  as well as a once sheet of the new rules. No additional rules though we can't forget that new errata now can we?!

Flicking through the big book I see lots of colorful art and some background for the two starter factions. Also a painting guide and some other stuff you would expect to see like warscrolls and two Battalion lists with special abilities. Plus! There are 6 scenarios which seem to step up the learning curve of the game and new models quite nicely. And this photo. Not sure what it is but it reminded of 40k force organization charts. 

More to come later in the week! Hopefully with some games and assembled minis to show.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

First Age of Sigmar game - Initial Impressions and questions.

Managed to oversee a game of the new Age of Sigmar rules this week in a matchup of the Ogre Kingdoms vs Vampire Counts. I played referee as two completely new Warhammer players took the reigns of the two forces on the table and the results were mostly positive! 

First we had to choose what to play with. Since there is nothing in the short 4 page rules about balance or how to make an army list we decided to go with two of the thematic lists at the end of each Battlescroll. That meant for the Ogre Kingdoms it was time to bring in the Gutbuster Wartribe! And with the Vampire Counts we dug up the ole' Deathrattle Horde! 

The rules for each and what we added (for fun):

Gutbuster Wartribe
1 Tyrant
1 Butcher
3 units of Ogres (we used two units of 3 with champs and bellowers, and one unit of 4 with full command)
1 unit of Ironguts (we used a unit of 5 with full command)
1 unit of Leadbelchers (we used a unit of 4 with champs and bellower)
and we added.... 1 Giant! 

The Gutbusters have the ability of the Ogre Charge which allows them do deal mortal wounds when finishing a charge move. Not too different from the earlier versions of the Ogre Kingdoms but this one is only available as part of this Battlescroll organization.

Deathrattle Horde
1 Wight King (this one had a banner)
1 unit of Black Knights (we used a unit of 10 with full command)
1 unit of Grave Guard (we used a unit of 14 with full command)
3 units of Skeletons (we used 2 units of 24, and one unit of 10 and all had full command)
and we added.... 1 Varghulf!

The Horde brings two special abilities with them on their Battlescroll. First they have the ability to re-roll save rolls of 1 when within 6" of another unit of this battalion. Powerful! Second they can always march 4" when they run which gets them farther into the battlefield at a steady rate. 

In the end after counting up all the stats of all the models we came in at 107 wounds for the Ogre Kingdoms vs 109 wound for the Vampire Counts. All in all it seemed pretty even heading into battle and we chose to play on a 2' x 4" table length wise. 

The Gutbusters were the underdogs with less models on the board and chose the Sudden Death objective of staying alive until turn 6. 

With the game under way the Gutbusters managed to get the first turn in most of the first phases and proceeded to move up and into position for a potential charge. The Deathrattle Horde followed suite and soon it was just a matter of time before carnage!! 

While the Ogres got the first charges in on a unit of Skeletons they didn't count on being stabbed to death by so many spears in the Combat phase. After only one Ogre was left the Giant decided he better get into the action too. 

With the help of the Giant and some additional Ogres the first big block of Skeletons began to crumble away though the ability of the nearby Wight King really shined in keeping them standing with an extra save (as their normal save was handily negated by crushing Ogre weapons). 

After taking out the Skeletons the Giant felt the full force of the nearby Grave Guard unit and decided to fall on some Ogres on the way out. A large and decisive battle was shaping up in the center of the board while (not shown) the Black Knights and Varghulf took out the unit of Leadbelchers and began eating through the group of Ironguts. Meanwhile back in the center the Butcher fell to the Wight King's blade and things were looking grim for the remaining Ogres. After a couple of failed attempts at eating the Ironguts the Varghulf and remaining Black Knights fell and allowed the Gutbusters to swing around and finish off the remaining Skeletons and Black Knight with the Tyrant crushing the head of the Wight King to dust. 

Result - Major Victory for the Ogre Kingdoms. 

So what did we learn? How about a handy bullet point list!
- The game is easy to pick up and grasp and neither new player had trouble figuring out what did what and when. 
- The back and forth in each phase makes the tactics a little more random but also more interesting.
- Choosing your combats is very important!
- The random run and charge was not much of a problem for either army with their command and other special abilities and everyone got where they wanted to go pretty easily. 
- It did turn into a bit of a scrum in the middle of the table but part of that was the shape and size of the battlefield we chose. 
- Fun was had and both players expressed interest in playing more and learning the game with different factions. 

But what did I think about the new rules and gameplay? Glad you asked...

Stuff I liked
- The simplified To Hit and To Wound and Saves. Yes I like the old WHFB style too but it was always one of the hardest things to teach new players. The new mode is easy and quick and you don't have to do a bunch of mental math expect for when dealing with Saves vs. Rending

- The thematic feel of the units. At least in this game the Skeletons and Deathrattle Horde did exactly what I have always wanted to see... acted as a legion of creepy reanimated Skeletons and who wouldn't go quietly! They really hung around and in mass they managed to do some serious damage to the Ogres. Conversely the Ogres really showed their brute strength and killing prowess by smashing the crap right out of the undead minions when they hit. 

- The rule of cool! Glad we added the monsters to both lists because they brought a lot of fun to the game and were quite effective. The mechanic of them getting less powerful as they take damage is a good one I think and it is nice not having to worry about Battleshock tests on them as they will never lose a model from their unit until they die. 

Stuff I wasn't in love with
- The movement seems a bit needlessly sloppy when you are playing with larger units of 20-30. We kept our big units on movement trays until we got into Combat but even then it was a bit of a mess. Couple that with the ability to stack minis on bases and well... I ended up with 5 broken Skeleton miniatures which I am not too happy about. 

- The terrain rules. I like terrain and the rules for it in the 4 page book are basically anti-terrain. Since there are no rules besides the magical D6 table I can't see a lot of love or effort going into this for most tables. Of course that might change with the release of new kits and rules. 

- The rules lookup. Of course it is a new set of rules and this is bound to happen. Still! With each unit having rules on it's own Battlescroll section and some units having rules on other Battlescrolls (like the Vampire Counts basically having the ability to summon units of any type from any of the scrolls) and then adding in the special rules for each Character, and then the rules for each terrain piece, and then the rules for each of the special organizations we used... it just felt messy and unorganized. 

- The lack of rules clarity. Especially in regards to units and their equipment. Who has what? Who can have what? Can we have mixed equipment in our units? Simplicity is nice but simple to the point of just making up your own solution can be frustrating.

So there you have it. First impressions are mostly positive and I felt the two forces we played with were pretty balanced from beginning to end. With a few different rolls the game could have gone either way a couple times. I hope to see some more direction for rules and army composition in the future but I am certainly excited to be playing Warhammer again and the idea of getting new blood playing in my area is great too.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Progress Report 7/6/15 - The age before Sigmar.

Age of Sigmar!! AHHHHH

So there we have all that... and of course all the rules are up and accessible. You've no doubt read them all multiple times by now right!? 

I won't lie. I am excited. I haven't played any WHFB 8th ed in a year or more and the interest around these parts is at an all time low. Hoping that with the opening of a new FLGS with more gaming space and the release of this new version that is about the change. Going to be playing my first game of AoS later today so I will report on my experiences next time around. 

Meanwhile... been working on a new Blood Bowl  team for Chaos Cup, a new Dwarf warband for Mordheim, and a miniature for the Chaos Cup Legacy team. Here is the photographic evidence!

This is my Hobgoblin #13 for the Chaos Cup 15 Chaos Dwarf legacy team. Pretty basic. I like how he turned out though.

These are the three big guy apes for my new Chaos Pact Blood Bowl team. Left to Right you have the Minotaur, Ogre, and Troll.

 These are the Chaos Marauder apes. Their twisted creator has something for giant arms and tubes.

Speaking of which here is the twisted Halfling scientist himself! Plus the Dark Elf and Goblin apes.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

New Age of Sigmar miniature photos leaked.

Bit behind on this so anyone who is actively following the upcoming Warhammer Age of Sigmar has probably already seen these... but look! 

But Randroid! What do you think about all these changes and shiny new models and stuff!? Well...

The name has already flown out and stuck to the Sigmarines. From the photo I am not in love with the look but I am also not a fan of Space Marines which these are clearly using as a design aesthetic.

The Chaos forces look cool but I am always a sucker for barbarian type dudes in various forms of undress rampaging about with their blood and skulls. I can see plenty of uses for them in other games I play too like Mordheim and Blood Bowl. So yeah I like them.

Round bases? Eh... I am not going to rebase my old WHFB minis. I can live with it.

New rules? Well the rumor that at least this starter box will have free rules available is pretty cool and certainly more in line with other current gaming companies. I certainly wouldn't mind a more skirmish focused ruleset as I don't have the time for long games of WHFB anymore in my life. Hopefully they scale up nicely to include larger units or blocks of infantry. I certainly won't be working on any of my WHFB armies in (eternal) progress until I learn more.

But what about Ogres!? Shit man!! I don't know! I hope they make it into this new world and 9th edition. All I can say is my love for Ogres and monsters will never die and worst case Ogre lovers can always fall back to 8th edition or roll into Kings of War or something. They will survive!

Now the waiting can begin until the official announcement comes around. 

Monday, June 1, 2015

Progress Report 6/1/15 - Working backwards in time.

So May happened eh??

Short list of things that I did but did not chronicle here on the ole blog:
- Converted up some Chaotic Cultist types for a Possessed Mordheim warband
- Played a big game of Mordheim for the campaign Furry is patiently trying to run
- Messed around with a bit of terrain for Mordheim
- Kinda painted a little bit of some dog things for general WHFB/Mordheim use
- Attended Headbangers Ball V in Xtreme's garage with Chaos Dwarfs and won the coloring contest (got a test pressing of the new Blood Bowl Da Gof Rockerz sawblade vinyl so that is cool)
- Re-started/re-upped the Carlsbad cinematic Unisystem game I was running over a year ago
- Ran a session of Pathfinder Societies
- Worked. A lot. 
- Started a side business making and selling pizzas

Sadly none of that got any attention here! Need to find a better way to balance my very limited free hobby time and the blog updating. I suppose the first step is a giant collection of photographic evidence?!!

This game was a bit of a let down. Spent the majority of it being shot to death by Skaven with slings. Finally routed with just 4 Heroes and 1 Zombie left - Vampire, Necromancer, and a hero Ghoul. On the plus side my Necromancer finally managed to make it to the top of a tower (by starting there) where he failed to use his BS5 for anything useful. 

Slapped together this ruined building with the Chaos summoning/worship site in it. This beastman is ready to party in the ruins!! 

Here we are at Headbangers Ball... my favorite Blood Bowl tournament of the year!! This time it was held in Xtreme's Garage on a pissing rainy humid shitty day. Perfect!! Beers were drank, metal lyrics and band names were shouted, moshpits and guitar heroes were enacted, and I was the lone overachiever in the coloring contest. Oh and I finally got to drink the Iron Maiden Trooper beer thanks to my pal Jonny P. Can you spot me in that last group photo? (Hint - I am the one looking metal as fuck).  Oh yeah and I played Chaos Dwarfs themed after the almighty Bolt Thrower (Block Thrower) and ended up 1-2-1 for the day. Should have returned with the Goregrinders (my Ogres) and held on to my Warpig (most Cas) trophy!!

Now on to a fantastic summer of slinging pizza, playing games, and getting down to the lake! June!!